Page last updated at 11:43 GMT, Friday, 30 January 2009

Ghost tales spook hospital staff

Derby City General hospital
The complex is built on the site of an earlier hospital

Derby's new super-hospital is making a chaplain available following reports of a ghostly figure in the building.

Staff at Derby City General hospital, where a 334m building project is ongoing, have reportedly seen a mysterious apparition in the building.

Managers said they took information from staff seriously and were working with the chaplaincy to ease fears.

But they denied any suggestion that an exorcism or similar ceremony was being planned for the hospital.

The Reverend Canon Elaine Jones, an advisor to the bishop of Derby on the paranormal, said she had been asked to visit and investigate the claims.

Ghost sightings

Canon Jones said she was completely open-minded about the situation. She added that every case is different and until she had spoken to staff she could not comment further.

A hospital spokesperson said: "There is absolutely no truth in what has been reported in the media today that an exorcism has been arranged. We will be talking to staff in the department to listen to their concerns.

"We respect our staff and always listen to their views to help put minds at ease.

"Derby's new hospital is built on the existing Derby City Hospital site which has a wealth of history of providing quality care for patients in Derby."

Derby has a reputation for being a centre for supernatural activity, according to a recent investigation conducted by paranormal researcher Lionel Fanthorpe.

The Supernatural Britain Report examined ghost sightings in 40 cities across the UK, and Derby came top of the list.

His research uncovered 315 reports of ghosts and poltergeists in the city - an average of 14 sightings per 10,000 members of its population.

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